10/6/14

Jimmy Choo Man (Jimmy Choo)



I read a good article this morning by a female freelance writer for Salon.com named Ellen Burkhardt, who is twenty-six years old, from Minnesota, and apparently still a virgin. Her piece was about how difficult it is to be a twenty-six year old professional woman who is openly a virgin, and saving sex for marriage to the "right" man. I found it interesting because it struck a few inner chords for me, some conflicting, but as the day went on and I parsed the text further, everything evened out.

Ms. Burkhardt states early on in the article that she takes pride in her virginity because she feels it "separates" her from "other women," a statement that didn't go over very well with Salon's readership, judging by their comments. It seemed to attract the snobbiest, and even the angriest remarks, and I strongly suspect they are mostly from men. The issue is the idea that because she abstains from sex, she somehow thinks that she's unique because of it. This angers men because it seems to them to be a trivial reason to withhold what is, in their collective estimation, an important feature of any modern (or postmodern) relationship. In other words, to many of her readers, Ms. Burkhardt's virginity isn't worth it - to men.

The comments are generally negative toward her and her position. One person remarked that she's "weird" and that the world isn't interested in her because of it. Several others said that she's setting herself up for marital failure, for whenever she does happen to meet Mr. Right and marry him, the sex will be bad (she's too inexperienced to satisfy anyone), the man will likely be a homosexual anyway (who else would have that sort of patience with her?), and it'll all end in divorce, after which she'll be a sad, disillusioned, middle-aged divorcee now forced to start all over again and, well, not have sex until the next Mr. Right (which is implicity ridiculous). One of the most ironic comments read:
"The author has an extremely immature, overly-romanticized notion of sex. Sure, sex within a loving relationship is great, just like any fun activity can be enhanced by enjoying it with someone you love. But that isn't the ONLY way to enjoy . . . practice makes perfect. That is, sex is usually better after two people get to know each other sexually. The first time might be just fine--IF both parties know what they're doing. But it usually gets better over time. It simply isn't going to be 'glorious!' the first time. And the only thing 'life-changing' isn't the act itself, but just going from being a person who doesn't have sex, to one who does."
So in translating this gobbledy-gook, this hyper-realist is saying that it's immature to "overly romanticize" the most romantic act two people can share between themselves, because it's just another example of sharing a "fun activity" with someone else, and make sure to allot the appropriate amount of time in life to practice it, so you can get better at all that down-to-earth fucking. And let me ruin it for you by adding that your first time is definitely NOT going to be "glorious!" Because somehow I know that.

If bullshit were music, this person would be the whole brass band. Several years ago I slept with a woman who was literally ruined by having too many sexual partners, to the point that she couldn't really identify what part of our relationship was actually meaningful anymore, and she openly admitted it. All that bedpost notching caught up with her, made her untrusting, jaded, pensive, cynical. Of course it goes without saying that Ms. Burkhardt should ignore the nonsense being written under her piece, because none of it is based on anything other than people's insecurities, their personal vendettas against certain kinds of women, in this case virgins. These comments are perfect examples of people talking out of their asses.

What makes it even more heinous is that these commenters hide behind manufactured monikers, taking cheap shots at a woman with the courage to publicly write about one of her most personal decisions using her real name, and even a photograph of herself. She is a brave soul surrounded by cowards, strength surrounded by weakness, and all that weakness trying to pull her strength down to their level. I think little of morons who parade around blithely ignorant of their own stupidity, and even less of those who do it using pseudonyms.

I admit that I raised an eyebrow when I read her original statement about "separating" herself from other women. This seemed a little naive to me, for I've met a few women who opted to be virgins until marriage. In a sense, there's actually nothing distinctly separatist about being a female virgin, even in her twenties. It certainly isn't how the majority of twenty six year-olds identify, but I wouldn't consider it particularly unique. And I'll admit that there's a part of me that bristles a little whenever I read something by a woman championing the virtues of virginity.

For the majority of the male population, especially the average Joe on the street, the luxury of creating a long-game life plan for when we will and will not have sex isn't a reality. Attractive men can afford it perhaps, but most middle-grounders like myself will pursue sex and feel lucky whenever we can have it, simply because we really are like dogs after all. We really do treat every hay roll like it's our last (well okay, maybe not quite, but that's the emphasis we put on it). Then again, that very fact is probably the reason women like Ms. Burkhardt can customize their sexual lives to exactly their desired fit and finish.

Jimmy Choo Man is the perfume version of the naive concept of being new and different and unique by acting in a way that is plainly not new, or different, or in any way unique. One gets the feeling from Choo that releasing this very first masculine was like taking some sort of magic plunge for the brand, for *gasp!* it's a MASCULINE FRAGRANCE FROM JIMMY CHOO!!! You know Jimmy Choo, the guy who makes insanely expensive stilettos for women with too much disposable income! And he's selling something to men! Everyone get behind me, I'm going to faint.

I half expected the fragrance to smell like a feminine perfume, simply because I'm conditioned to only expect feminine products from anything bearing the Choo label. Imagine my surprise upon sniffing this thing. It comes in a drab grayish bottle, which I took to be an effort to not come off as too "girly" the first time around. Bland looking, but still appropriate enough at the price-point. The fragrance? At first I thought my guess was correct, because the top notes are sweet, almost severely so, loaded with synthetic fruit ester materials that scream pineapples and melons and berries and pink peppery fizz. It's that whole Spectorian wall of sound effect, for the nose.

Ten minutes later it evens out, and what do you know? It's Bleu de Chanel, his lanky blue bones of synthetic labdanum, vetiver, ginger, and citrus settled in a massive La-Z-Boy of fuzzy patchouli and woody ambers. This turns the proceedings more than a little butch, but does nothing for me. Recognizing a clone of Bleu slouched in between all the louder sweet stuff is like seeing Alain Delon in drag. Why muss up such chic masculinity with cheesy, borderline comical pretense? I don't get it. JC Man smells good in a very department store party-scent sort of way, and the BdC aspect gives it a bit of dignity beyond the call of duty, but why go halfsies here? Go gurl power or go superman, but pick one already. In the end, JC Man makes me want to smell the real Bleu de Chanel and call it a day.

The message I would impart to Jimmy Choo is the same message I have for Ms. Burkhardt: revel in your choices, but don't try to sell me the "unique" line, because there's no point. Whatever you're doing has been done before. It's 2014. You're not breaking any new ground. You're not blowing anyone's mind. You might be pissing off people who think they know better than you (many of whom don't), but let's face it, that ain't new either. I have no idea if Jimmy intended to imitate someone else's design in this fragrance, or if it's just a strange coincidence, just as I don't know how much of Ms. Burkhardt's essay was being played as straight as she made it seem, but in the end I begrudge neither of them for their chosen courses of action. No harm, no foul.





3 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Very interesting, thanks for passing this along.

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  2. I actually thought Jimmy Choo Man smellt quite a bit like Sauvage, maybe a little better, or at least sweeter, but I forget since it was just one spray at Macy's since the sales lady was "pushing" them. (the NEW stuff), but I was looking for some specific old schools, which they didn't have.
    I remember them being quite similar with the peppery note.
    Anyways, nice posts, they provide a good read, and I like to read what other people write about the fragrances I have.
    Reading your reviews I think we both seem to have similar likes.

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